How Can You Fix Frozen Pipes?

With the temperatures finally dropping, now is the perfect time for homeowners to prepare for the potential of frozen pipes. Frozen pipes are not only inconvenient, limiting or completely restricting a house’s water supply, but the pressure built up inside them can cause significant issues.

From damaging a home’s floors and ceilings to ruining furniture and heirlooms, you don’t want to take the chance of not tending to frozen pipes. That’s why you need to ensure your Dayville Homeowners Insurance policy is updated. Homeowners coverage can protect you from a significant loss in the event of water damage.

While trying to prevent frozen pipes is essential during winter, knowing what to do when they do freeze is just as important.

Here are some tips on what you can do when your house’s pipes freeze over.

Location, Location, Location

To thaw a frozen pipe, you need to know which lines are indeed frozen. Start by turning on the faucets in your house. If no water—or very little water—comes out, then a pipe leading to the faucet is likely frozen. If one pipe is compromised, others near it are as well.

If you have exposed pipes, like those fitted under a sink or in basements, you may be able to spot the area where the pipe is frozen. To identify the affected area, look for frost or slight bulges. If the blockage is located in the part of the pipe you can access, you will have more ease when trying to thaw them than if the affected portion is enclosed behind a wall.

Pro tip: Before you begin your efforts to thaw, make sure to open the faucet that the pipe feeds into. Open both handles as this helps to relieve pressure in the system.

Thawing Exposed Pipes

If the pipe is in an area you can get to quickly, there are several ways to try to thaw it. Make sure to continue to apply the heat until the water is running at full strength from the faucet. Here are a few ways to thaw exposed pipes:

  • Heat Lamp: Place the heat lamp so that the heat can reach the frozen area. This indirect heat helps to thaw a pipe rather quickly. If you don’t have a heat lamp, try using a portable space heater, giving you the same result.
  • Hairdryer: An easy option for thawing pipes, hairdryers can take care of this issue in a matter of minutes. Position the hairdryer, prop it up, and check back on it later, or hold it in the position until the pipe thaws. As with all electrical equipment, make sure to take proper precautions and avoid areas where water is present.
  • Electrical Heating Tape: Another option is to apply electrical heating tape to the pipe. When put in place, it works to disperse heat to keep water from freezing in the pipe or thaw frost and ice built up inside. As the weather gets colder, the tape works to stop any precipitation from forming into more ice, helping water flow freely.

Thawing Enclosed Pipes

If you have to deal with pipes that have frozen and are enclosed, you might find it inconvenient but not impossible to thaw them. Here are a few options:

  • Infrared Lamp: You can try to use an infrared lamp by placing it near the pipe area. The heat from the light may break through the wall and allow the pipe to thaw.
  • Turn Up the Heat: An uncomplicated way to attempt to thaw frozen pipes is by turning up the heat inside the house. Turning the temperature up may be just what you need to do and could help as a starting point before getting out the lamps and tape.
  • Start Cutting: If it gives you more flexibility, cut out the section of the drywall in front of the frozen pipe(s) so that you can gain access. From there, you can then use any of the tips noted above.

When to Call Professionals

If you’re more comfortable leaving the issue up to the pros or have tried some of the methods listed here to no avail, you might want to give the professionals a call. If you notice persistent noises when all faucets are off or low water pressure after you thaw the pipes, call a licensed plumber to remedy the problem completely.

About Byrnes Agency

At Byrnes Agency, we offer insurance solutions that can be tailored to meet your specific needs. Whether you’re looking for personal policies or commercial coverage, we have the right coverage for you. To learn more about our products, contact us today at one of our two locations.

If you’ve enjoyed what you’ve read here and would like to know when we’ve published a new blog post, please “like” us on our Facebook page, and share this with your Connecticut neighbors.

Dayville Office

Phone: (860) 774-8549

394 Lake Rd

Dayville, CT 06241

United States

Hours of Operation: Monday- Friday 9:00am-5:00pm

Norwich Office

Phone: (860) 886-5498

6 Consumers Avenue

Norwich, CT 06360

United States

Hours of Operation: Monday- Friday 9:00am-5:00pm